...you know, as opposed to safety? Kinda interesting story; pre-season speculation from 4 years ago is difficult to recall, at best. So, I'm not sure if I totally remember people thinking he'd be a linebacker. Wasn't Belichick attempting to do the same thing with Tank Williams (same year? year before?)? Anyway, I'm guessing that this idea of safeties-at-LB is related to the "star" and "money" positions that Belichick came up with back in CLE w/ Nick Saban; highlighted below: Alabama defense 101: nickel = Star, dime = Money, DBs = LBs | al.com The extra defensive back in the nickel is called the â€śStar.â€ť The sixth DB in the dime plays the â€śMoneyâ€ť position. The terms for these important positions originated during Sabanâ€™s days as the defensive coordinator with the Cleveland Browns and coach Bill Belichick, from 1991-94. â€śIn the old days, I called the fifth defensive back nickel back, and we never really played six defensive backs,â€ť he said. The middle linebacker (Mike) and the weak inside linebacker (Will) stayed in the game, and a defensive back replaced the strong outside linebacker (Sam). â€śWell, when I went to Cleveland, everything that Bill Belichick does has some purpose, from what you call blitz to what you call fire-zone front,â€ť Saban said. â€śThe Star really is the Sam, so he wanted an s-word for that position. When you put six guys in the game, whether it's a sub linebacker or a sixth defensive back, we had nickel, dime, dollar. Different money terms." The sixth defensive back takes the place of the weak inside linebacker.